Julien Barge, Cote-Rotie "Cote Brune", 2016

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Julien Barge

Of the producers of traditional Côte-Rôtie the wines of the Barge family have continually captured our hearts. The number of producers making wine the way the Barges do in Côte-Rôtie can literally be counted on one hand. The basic recipe is organic farming, whole-cluster fermentation, and aging in large, neutral wooden barrels. Simple enough, yet it seems the desire for such minimalism eludes many Côte-Rôtie producers these days.

2016 was the first vintage that the domaine’s wines are now under Gilles son Julien’s name. Like his father before him, Gilles has passed the torch to the next generation. And from what we’ve tasted these wines continue to glow bright with that unique flame that has always attracted us to their wine.

Often the concern is that, in young hands, a winery may tend towards more modern techniques and thus modern style. However, we’re happy to say this is not the case. If anything, Julien has been a driving force of pushing the domaine further towards noninterventionist practices. Starting with his first vintage Julien removed all sulfur additions to the domaine’s white wines. In 2018 he halted all spraying in the vineyards. We only expect this trend to continue and the wines to improve.

There has always been plenty of excitement around the Barge wines throughout the industry. As such their wines are in increasing demand. If you are a Rhône lover or a Burgundy fanatic looking to branch out you owe it to yourself to add these wines to your collection. However, even if you’re a relative newcomer to the world of fine wine, there is no doubt these wines will entrance you.